There are other passages, however, where his pain regarding the future of Jerusalem is evident. In Matthew 23:37, he says, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones God’s messengers! How often I have wanted to gather your children together as a hen protects her chicks beneath her wings, but you wouldn’t let me.” In Luke 19:41, we are told Jesus at one point wept over the city.
In 1892, the artist Enrique Simonet imagined this emotional moment.
Lord, like chicks who know their mother, may we in faith huddle beneath your wings. Amen.
This Sunday at Holston View United Methodist Church, the sermon will draw fromMark 12:38-44, where Jesus again causes us to think about our spiritual relationship with money. If you cannot join us in person, join us online at 11 a.m., or watch a recording later.
As we prepare for Sunday, James Tissot’s “The Widow’s Mite” is offered for your consideration. Much of the artwork developed around this story shows the widow with a child in her arms. While the addition of the child is an elaboration, going beyond what we find in the text, these depictions do remind us of the basic call to care for “widows and orphans,” the most vulnerable people in Jesus’ day. Note in particular the expression captured on the widow’s face.
Lord, keep us mindful that in your eyes, treasure is stored in the heart. Amen.
The painting below, Raphael’s “Death of Ananias,” depicts a moment when God’s justice fell upon a husband who was part of a deceptive couple in the early church. (The wife receives her portion soon after.) The story is found in Acts 4:32-5:11. Does the story and its depiction shock you? Why might we be shocked that God’s justice could be so swift?
Lord, we thank you for the mercy and grace you continually shower upon us. We know that without Jesus Christ, your justice would be swift, righteous and terrible. Amen.
As we at Holston View UMC move toward a Sunday service of healing, here’s an opportunity to meditate on an image based on Matthew 9:18-26. George Percy Jacomb-Hood in 1895 painted this oil on canvas depicting the raising of Jairus’ daughter.
Lord, may our faith sustain us, and may the signs you send us astonish all witnesses. Amen.
Today, LifeTalk introduces a new feature. Occasionally, rather than a written devotion, you will receive a work of art depicting a story from the Bible or some other aspect of our relationship with God.
If you’ve ever read Henri J.M. Nouwen’s “Return of the Prodigal Son,” a meditation on Rembrandt’s depiction of the moment of reunion, you will understand how to approach this opportunity. In fact, we will begin with that same work of art, based on the story found in Luke 15:11-32. Starting here seems appropriate on the heels of ‘Debo Onabanjo’s recent efforts to explore this parable.
The art you receive will be in the public domain or used with the permission of the artist. Submissions of original art are welcome, by the way. Send them in a large format to email@example.com.
Lord, reveal new truths to us as your holy word inspires the artists around us. Amen.